Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer related death which needs novel drugs to improve patient outcomes. In this study, we examined the ability of YF-18, a novel matrine derivative to inhibit the growth and migration of lung cancer cells. By cell cycle analysis, wound healing and transwell assays, we found that YF-18 induced G2/M cell cycle arrest and inhibited migration of lung cancer cells in a dose-dependent manner. Further results indicated that YF-18 inhibited cell proliferation and migration through down-regulating Skp2 and up-regulating its substrates, p27 and E-cadherin. Moreover, YF-18 inhibited A549-luciferase cell xenograft tumor growth in a dose-dependent manner. The findings indicate that YF-18 bears therapeutic potentials for lung cancer.